PANAMA CITY— “We’re alive,” were the first words out of Jacob Shores mouth when he finally made contact with his sister Robin in Jacksonville late Thursday afternoon.

“I’m standing here where dad’s house used to be,” he said as he broke down in tears.

Jacob, the 42-year-old son of Robert and Betty Shores, rode out Hurricane Michael with his wife and girls inside his father's home, and it collapsed around them Wednesday as the Category 4 storm barreled through.

“She was sorry, but glad we’re alive,” Jacob said.

Jacob reiterated the same sentiment as his sister.

“We’re alive, that’s all that matters,” he said.

They spent the day Thursday digging through rubble. Jacob said they found his wife’s purse and insurance papers.

“We also found some random toys of the kids ... something that would make them smile,” he said.

His dad Robert said, “most of it’s gone ...I had a little cash that I was able to find.”

Wednesday night the Shores slept in their truck.

“Betty wont leave. She wont go 'cause she’s afraid they’ll steal stuff,” he said, noting they’ve been offered housing by neighbors.

Robert said the family was going to try and sleep in their den, the only room left standing in the house, Thursday night.

“We’re just happy to not be dead from it,” Robert said.